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Use prop savers? I made a prop saver tool

Old 05-07-2016, 06:32 AM
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mclarkson
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Default Use prop savers? I made a prop saver tool

I use prop savers on a lot of my planes. I've had bad luck with o-rings, so I know generally use a small slice of surgical tubing to hold the prop in place. This works great except ... it's really tight and fiddly to get the o-ring / tubing in place over the prop. I've used hemostats, pliers, small screw drivers. They all suck.

About a week ago, I had an idea for a different tool and, while looking for materials in a drawer, found some picture hanging hardware that I thought would work for what I had in mind. I built a prototype tool and it works great. Here's what I did.

I started with a cheap picture hanger, like one of these. My original was made from a thinner picture hanger than these, but these work fine. They cost $0.97 for a 3-pack.




I straightened out the hook part that's designed to hold the wire on the back of the picture.




I flattened mine out in a small vice, but pliers or a hammer will do.


Here's the shape at this point.


Next, I add a new bend in the opposite direction from the original hook. This will only stick out 1/8" or thereabouts.




Here's the final shape.


I added a sort of handle by putting some shrink wrap about the lower portion of the tool.


Here's the finished tool. My thinner original is at the top.


I've found this to be nearly perfect for grabbing onto my o-rings, etc., pulling them into place, and then letting go of them again.




FWIW
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Old 05-07-2016, 08:02 AM
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solentlife
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I stopped using them on many of models but still have a few.

I use O rings from local care parts shop ---- bagful costs peanuts and so many sizes to suit.

Your tool is good ... we all need little gadgets for various. My main one is scraps of control rod with short L bent into the end, bound with tape - for tightening / undoing those cone nuts on proof shafts.

For O rings to be honest - I found a wide blade screwdriver best. Like most I went through the small blades and various to get the ring over the second screw, but then realized that what was needed was a blade just slightly wider than the screw. Put blade through ring, then using back of the screw for leverage - lever the ring till it slips off wide blade and behind screw. Basically mimics what your handy tool does.

Nigel
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Old 05-07-2016, 08:05 AM
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solentlife
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Pal of mine has a scrap control rod that is bent into a U at one end with the open part of the U facing out. Rest of rod forms a handle.

Puts ring on first screw, hooks the U into the ring, pushes it over the second screw.

Nigel
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Old 05-07-2016, 11:40 AM
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mclarkson
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I had no luck with screwdrivers, especially when it's a really tight fit. *shrug*
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Old 05-07-2016, 12:55 PM
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Glacier Girl
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Similar to the dental picks I have. Word on yours, make sure you have no sharp edges or burrs on the metal, as it may nick or cut the band as it slides off.

Nice idea though.
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Old 05-07-2016, 02:04 PM
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birdDog
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Need something like a brake spring tool for the old drum brakes. Essentially a screwdriver or pry bar with a notch cut on one side. The notch in the tool straddles the post that you are hooking the spring around. The notch keeps the tool centered on the post as you lever the spring on. I launched quite a few springs before I finally invested in the tool. Just use a little spit and everything will slide right into place.
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Old 05-07-2016, 03:50 PM
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fdnyjery
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Great Idea mark. Since I use those O rings on a regular basis this tool you designed will come in real handy. Thanks for Sharing with all of us . I am off to Michaels to get my photo hangers !! :o)) fdnyjery aka Jerry
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